The last resting places of the ancestors of Qin Shihuang - the First Emperor of the Qin Dynasty (221-207 BC) - have been discovered on a mountain in Northwest China's Gansu Province.
The tombs were found on Dabaozi Mountain in Lixian County, which has been confirmed as the place named "Xiquan Qiu" and considered the origin place of the Qin people.
These people were recorded by Sima Qian of the Han Dynasty (206 BC-AD 220) in his great works Historical Records.
The discovery will provide more data for further research of the politics, economy and culture of the Qin Dynasty as well as the early technology of metallurgy and casting, experts said.
The history and culture of the Qin Dynasty have been hotly debated among domestic and foreign historians and archaeologists since the First Emperor united China from separate kingdoms in 221 BC.
The discovery complements previous research which stated there should be four tomb areas for the Qin people.
Archaelogists discovered three of them 15 years ago in Northwest China's Shaanxi Province, which neighbours Gansu, a Xinhua report said.
Since the Qin Dynasty Terracotta Warriors and horses as well as the Qin Shihuang Mausoleum were found in Shaanxi Province in 1974, Chinese historians and archaeologists had been hunting the tombs.
Li Chaoyuan, deputy director of Shanghai Museum, said the tombs were thought to have been built in the early Spring and Autumn Period (770-476 BC) in accordance with the unearthed utensils, inscriptions and the characteristics of casting.
( China Daily September 3, 2002)